Warhol. Mechanical Art provides a complete and polyhedral journey that enables visitors to follow the creative development of this exceptional artist from his beginnings as a budding commercial graphic designer in New York City in the 1950s, to his death in 1987, by which time he had become a universal legend. The show highlights various aspects of Warhol’s work, such as the innovative way in which he applied the idea of processing to his multi-faceted serial work, the strong biographical links, his artistic production, and his originality and talent for transversally and cyclically combining different techniques, media and iconographic repertoires. He created representations that are canons, as they form part of the official history of Western art, and symbols, having become part of contemporary collective popular imagery.
Organized by Museo Picasso Málaga in collaboration with Obra Social “la Caixa”, the exhibition contains paintings, sculptures, drawings, silkscreen paintings, audiovisual installations, artist books, films, record sleeves, posters, magazines, objects and photographic and audio material, which present viewers with the underground world that emerged in New York in the second half of the 20th century, when Warhol set up his legendary studio, The Silver Factory.
All of Warhol’s artistic periods are represented here, from his earliest drawings in the 1950s, to originals of many of his most iconic paintings – Before and After (1961), Three Coke Bottles (1962), Brillo Soap Pads Box (1964-1968), Gold Marilyn (1962), Liz (1963), Mao (1973), Cow Wallpaper(1966), and many more – right up to the 1986 large-format Self-Portrait, which greets visitors at the entrance to the exhibition. Furthermore, after runs at the CaixaForum in Barcelona and Madrid, the exhibition at Museo Picasso Málaga has added the paintings Campbell Soup (1962), Triple Rauschenberg (1962), Nine Jackies (1964) and twelve canvases of Mao (1973), along with the feature films Blow Job (1964), Eat (1964) and Sunset (1967), as well as more graphic works and documentary material.
The show also highlights some of his more iconic installations, such as the space that contains the Silver Clouds, which were made from an experimental reflecting material that was specially manufactured for the NASA space programme, and which convey the lightness of the sky and the weightlessness of outer space. Also on display is Exploding Plastic Inevitable, the extravaganza that included performances by The Velvet Underground and Nico, and which was a conceptual explosion of sound and motion.
Curated by the artistic director of Museo Picasso Málaga, José Lebrero Stals, Warhol. Mechanical Art arrives in Andalusia in its broadest and most complete version, after runs at at CaixaForum Barcelona (14 Sep. – 31 Dec. 2017) and CaixaForum Madrid (31 Jan. – 6 May 2018). Therefore, this is the last chance to admire this major retrospective of Andy Warhol and his work.